February 27, 2012
The words "Mastered for iTunes" which now appear on some albums and songs in the iTunes Store mean that the content has been specially engineered for higher fidelity sound on your computer, stereo, and mobile devices to produce an incredibly rich listening experience. The superior audio and dynamic range result in music the way the artist and sound engineer intended. To earn the words "Mastered for iTunes" the content producers must begin with a high-resolution digitization of the original analog source, follow the Store-recommended best mastering practices we've developed and tested, and audition the results on Apple devices. As you browse our current selection of Mastered for iTunes music, take advantage of the ability to preview the tracks on the devices and systems you use to enjoy your music. And check back regularly to see what's been added.
February 20, 2012
You're probably familiar with Genius recommendations, playlists, and mixes for music. Did you know Genius is also available for movies, TV shows, and iOS apps? The Genius button is on the upper right of the App Store Featured page on iPhone and iPod touch and near the bottom left on iPad. When you turn Genius on it recommends new apps based on ones you already have. You can sharpen its recommendations by removing ones you're not interested in from future suggestions with a swipe on iPhone and iPod touch and a tap on the Not Interested buttons on iPad. Also, you can look at recommendations within specific categories on iPad by using the Categories button on the upper left when you have Genius selected.
For Genius recommendations for TV shows and movies on your computer, select them in your library and use the iTunes sidebar (you can show and hide it with the switch on the lower right of the window) to see the recommendations. You can get recommendations in the sidebar to match particular TV shows and movies in your library by selecting them individually. For recommendations on Apple TV, choose Genius in the Movies and TV Shows menus.
February 14, 2012
Did you know there are shortcuts to previews in the iTunes Store on your computer? They let you get more information about particular items and even sample them--all without losing your place. Shortcut controls appear throughout when you hold your pointer over what you're interested in. Pause over an album in the Music store, for instance, and a small "i" will appear on the lower right. Click it to produce a panel containing information about user ratings and a track listing. Hover over a track and a play button will appear so you can listen to the preview. In the Movies and TV Show sections, hovering produces a play button which you can click to watch a trailer or video preview. Info ("i") buttons also appear in the TV Shows, App, Books, Podcasts, and iTunes U sections, and in every case clicking them will produce panels that give you access to more information.
You can also quickly navigate to departments within the iTunes Store sections. Just hold your pointer over the section names across the top of the window and click the downward pointing triangle that will appear to see and navigate directly to categories within each of them. And if you're interested in flipping through the current promos at the top of the main page in each store section, move your pointer over the rotating panel on the right and use the arrow that will appear to look through them at your own pace.
February 6, 2012
The new iTunes U app allows educators at universities, colleges, and K-12 schools to design and deliver full courses directly to your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. Free to everyone, the courses cover everything from astronomy to business skills to the knife skills of a professional chef and more. In addition to access to the more than 500,000 free lectures, videos, books, and other resources already available via iTunes U in the iTunes Store, the iTunes U app supports new features that let you view the course assignment list, track your progress, make notes as you go, see notes and highlights from linked materials, and see the complete list of materials the instructor is using or recommends. For good examples of courses that include support for these enhanced features, get a free subscription to American Revolution from Yale, iPad and iPhone App Development (Fall 2011) from Stanford, Open University's Communicating Through Music, or Core Concepts in Chemistry from Duke.
The iTunes U app keeps a library of the courses you subscribe to just as iBooks keeps a library of the books you buy. To navigate between the catalog and your courses, use the buttons on the top left on iPad and the top right on iPhone and iPod touch. In your course library the covers for courses that support the new features display a spiral binding on the left. Use the tabs on the right on iPad or the buttons across the bottom on iPhone and iPod touch to explore the assignments (Posts) and the note taking capability and materials lists.